Whether you're a freshman new to campus or a seasoned senior who believes they know all there is to know about Syracuse, successfully surviving the Syracuse winters is truly a skill. After almost 20 years trudging through the snow, I have some advice for you.
1. It seems obvious, but invest in a good winter coat and boots.
Of course you don't need a $1,000 Canada Goose, but something with a little bit of padding to keep you warm.
2. Dress in layers.
Because everyone in Syracuse is aware of how cold it can get, the heat in buildings is usually pumping. Dress in layers so you can keep warm outside, but take them off so you're not sweating inside.
3. If you have a house or an apartment, make sure you have a shovel.
Getting trapped in your own driveway is not a joke. You're definitely going to need a shovel.
4. Always have salt a bag of salt in your car (cat litter works too)!
If your car gets stuck in the snow, pouring salt or cat litter by the tires makes it easier to get out.
5. Wake up a little earlier.
Walking on the hilly, slippery sidewalks with undeniably take more time when it's slushy and snowy out. Make sure you wake up a little earlier to assure you have enough time to get where you need to go safely.
6. Find a hot drink you like.
Whether it's tea, coffee, hot chocolate etc., you're going to want something warm to drink on your walks home or after being out in the cold for awhile.
7. Find some indoor activities that entertain you.
Play cards, a board game, paint, whatever you want. But more often than not, you're going to dread walking outside, let alone doing anything outdoors for fun.
8. Find some things that make you happy and pay attention to yourself.
This sounds dramatic, I know. But Syracuse can go weeks without the sun. It can get depressing. So make sure you listen to what your body and mind is telling you. If you're feeling down, work out or do something that fulfills you. The lack of vitamin D is no joke here.
9. Make the best of the beauty!
While the snow and cold can definitely be a pain, remember to enjoy just how beautiful the snow covered buildings and trees actually are. If you like to ski, head to Song or Lab Mountain. If you want to holiday related activities, visit Clinton Square ice rink and Christmas tree, or take a scenic drive to Skaneateles, where they have a "Dicken's Christmas" characters wandering the quaint, snowy streets.